The majority of marketers in the healthcare space understand the power of print communications. According to a report from the Society for Healthcare Strategy and Market Development, 80% of its members publish community publications, and 71% publish employee communications. Many of them (44%) also use publications to reach physicians. In other words, the industry as a whole understands that branded print is an effective way to expand your audience and elevate your brand.
With this in mind, True North’s Katy Mena-Berkley offers some excellent advice for leveraging your printed publication into an integrated content marketing strategy.
“While print remains viable — and usage is even increasing among younger demographics, an effective custom magazine is now part of a larger content strategy that typically includes digital touchpoints to promote, integrate and measure content developed for the publication,” she writes.
Mena-Berkley offers some interesting examples of this kind of evolved content strategy, including Sacred Heart Hospital’s Inspiring Health blog that leverages their premium magazine content, and Methodist Health Systems’ SHINE campaign that offers a multi-faceted content experience based on their quarterly print publication SHINE.
As she reminds us, “extending the content in your custom magazine to an integrated content approach offers several benefits for your audience and your organization,” including:
- Audience growth
- Channel depth
- Increased exposure for your content
- More touchpoint measurements to assess your impact.
The challenge for many marketers is evolving your print-centric strategy to a broader channel mindset. For Mena-Berkley, the first step is to integrate your custom magazine content into your website.
“To begin, start by identifying a place on your existing website to incorporate the content. A blog or health news section on your site may be perfect,” she writes. “If you do not have an area that acts like a blog, invest some time into creating a space that can be easily integrated into your company’s site. This addition will enhance your online presence and make your organization more competitive, paying dividends long term.”
Next, expand the life of your printed content by repurposing it into online content in other forms … infographics, shorter pieces, video content, podcasts, and other sharable digital pieces. This helps you create a strong body of online content that supports and amplifies the messaging of your print products, lending greater authority to your brand.
While Mena-Berkley is writing specifically for publishers in the health care market, this is solid advice for any print marketers. There is so much you can “do” with your magazine once it’s been published to help expand your audience reach and exposure. Print continues to thrive in the wider publishing ecosystem; an integrated channel strategy for your magazine continue will help your publication thrive as well.